An animation of a vortex street with a weak magnetic field and a tau of 20
The Voyager and Pioneer Spacecraft have detected large-scale quasi-periodic plasma fluctuations in the outer heliosphere beyond 20 AU. A plasma vortex sheet model can explain these fluctuations and the observed correlations between various physical variables. The large scale outer heliosphere is modeled by solving the 3-D compressible magnetohydrodynamic equations involving three interacting shear layers.
Computations were done on a Cray computer at the NASA Center for Computational Sciences.
Six cases are animated: Weak magnetic field and strong magnetic field, each at three values of tau, the vortex street characteristic time. Contours of density are shown as dark transparent 'tubes'. Critical points of the velocity field are represented by 'Glyphs'. Vortex cores are shown in orange and blue.
Please give credit for this item to: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
Scientific Visualization Studio
Science Paper: Siregar, E., D. A. Roberts, and M. L. Goldstein, Quasi-periodic transverse plasma flow associated with an evolving MHD vortex street in the outer heliosphere, J. Geophys. Res., 98, 13, 233, 1993.
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